Shona Foster

Senior Associate - Corporate and Commercial

Shona is a commercial lawyer with particular expertise in intellectual property. She regularly advises clients on a wide variety of intellectual property matters, including licensing and commercialisation.

Shona also provides advice on a range of other commercial matters including privacy law compliance, supply and distribution agreements, consumer law compliance, procurement, and IT agreements.

Prior to joining MinterEllisonRuddWatts, Shona worked in-house in the research and tertiary education sectors and in private practice in a national intellectual property firm. She has more than a decade of experience in the research sector, in legal and non-legal roles, and puts this practical experience to good use when advising clients in the research and deep tech sectors.

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Professional background

Recent work

Research, intellectual property licensing, and technology transfer
  • Advising venture capital funds on the acquisition of rights in new technologies, including intellectual property options, licences and assignments.
  • Advising on an international intellectual property licence for jewellery manufacture, including advising on royalty structures.
  • Advising various commercial and research organisations on research agreements, materials transfer agreements, and regulatory aspects of research.
Privacy, data retention, and electronic marketing
  • Advising a major New Zealand bank on privacy considerations in the design of a new service.
  • Advising a number of health-care and aged-care providers on privacy matters, including in response to COVID-19.
  • Providing privacy advice as part of due diligence in various local and international mergers or acquisitions.
  • Advising a nationwide professional body in relation to its new website and refreshed privacy and data retention policies.
  • Advising various local and international clients on practices, policies, and contractual arrangements relating to privacy, data retention, and electronic marketing, following the introduction of GDPR.
Commercial contracting
  • Part of the team advising the New Zealand Bankers Association (NZBA) on certain critical aspects of the Regional Banking Hubs pilot, a collaboration involving NZBA, six major New Zealand banks, and four community partners to trial a new approach to providing banking services in small rural communities.
  • Advising domestic and international clients on procurement, supply, and distribution arrangements at various points along the supply chain.
  • Advising various commercial clients on contractual rights and obligations in light of COVID-19.


  • LLB (Hons), BSocSc, University of Waikato


  • Member, Licensing Executives Society Australia and New Zealand (LESANZ)


  • Intellectual Property
  • Commercial Law
  • Technology
  • Privacy